Louisiana Tech introduced long-time Jim Larranaga assistant Eric Konkol as its new men’s basketball coach on Monday. The Wisconsin-Eau Claire graduate replaces Michael White, who left for the University of Florida after Billy Donovan became coach of the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder.
“We want to grow to the program and get to the NCAA Tournament,” said Konkol, a Larranaga assistant when George Mason reached the 2006 Final Four and Miami reached the Sweet 16 as a No. 2 seed in 2013.
Louisiana Tech has made five NCAA Tournament appearances, the last in 1991.
“A standard of excellence is growing here at Louisiana Tech,” Konkol said at his introductory news conference. “It is a direct result of the collective commitment by past and current administrators, coaches and players. Our goal is to keep pushing forward and continue to challenge for Conference USA championships and trips to the NCAA Tournament.”
Known as the team’s offensive coordinator, he helped the 2014-15 Hurricanes team to a 25-13 record, the second most wins in program history, and an appearance in the National Invitation Tournament championship game.
Miami snapped two impressive winning streaks along the way, defeating eventual national champion Duke, 90-74, ending the Blue Devils’ 41-game home winning streak which was the longest active streak in Division I at the time. The Canes also defeated Florida, snapping the Gators’ 33-game home winning streak was the third longest in the country.